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Brigadoon: Marin to Melan

Marin is a typical junior high school girl with a sunny disposition and a loving adoptive family. Her life takes a drastic change when a mysterious mirage is seen in the sky above the entire earth. Killer androids called Monomakia descend to earth from the formation in the sky called Brigadoon and begin to hunt down little Marin. She discovers a blue bottle in a shrine as she seeks escape and from the bottle comes a protector, a sword carrying gun slinging alien called Melan Blue, together they must save the earth and deal with family crisis, school prejudice and the police and come to an understanding of Marins past and Melans unexplained mission, as well as learn to trust each other. Set in 1969 Japan with a colorful cast of friends and enemies. (Source: ANN)
User Count1558
Favorites Count16
Start Date21st Jul 2000
Next ReleaseInvalid date
Popularity Rank3946
Rating Rank2449
Age RatingPG
Age Rating GuideTeens 13 or older
SubtypeTV
Statusfinished

Reviews

Sunrise, being one of the two meta-studios capable of funding anything their collective minds can fathom, decided that GaoGaiGar's director had something goin' for him.Leaving his only legacy for Sunrise two quirky arthouses; the enamoring but puzzling Brigadoon, and the philosophical/medical study, Betterman. Of the two, Brigadoon succeeds as both a step away from source inspirations and how to mindfuck someone and the recipient not feel violated.Brigadoon starts off as simple as the oldest mecha genre can be; plucky girl, Marin, has external problems that do little to upset his/her upbeat view of life. All of a sudden... robot invaders strike!The military is ineffective!They seem hellbent on capturing/killing the main character!What does Marin do??????Wait....! Who's this blue bot called Melan Blue? A friend it seems... or not???Briga's simple expo is both bold for a mecha show in modern times but also risky since its tiny alteration of having Marin and Melan being an actual "team" can be puzzling. Recent mechas like NGE, Blue Gender, and Gasaraki (including the director's other show Betterman), felt to include the human psyche as a determining factor in plot. But since those lied in the Real Robot bin, Briga's buddy bot seeds a whole buncha questions. Some might be:Is this a monster-of-the-week show like Gundam? Is this a romance (and if it is... why???)? Is this a straight buddy show City Hunter?Unlike eclectic mixes like Baccano, all such possibilities are strung together in tune to what is real within Marin's view and Melan's.I'm basically saying that the show minds both characters' issues and what's better, includes both of them constantly leading the show. So the funny thing is the result: Briga has MORE elements, style, mindbending, grave character handling; or potential, but all of this came from simple approach.What a concept.The downside? Who wants to wait?The answer? Who wants to be surprised?Luckily, two things are constants:1. Complete and utter character faithfulness/catharsis2. Some of the most genuine and understandable emotions in an anime; think One Piece.Imagine what themes await... betrayal, loss of innocence, power of belief, power of friendship (or more...); when you watch an obscurity like Briga you face one of the greatest truths as well, the courage of facing down the unknown.Now that I think about it, One Piece and even Gurren Lagann have another commonality; Art = Acquired Taste.One model of an attractive women might not sit well when you see it's "curvy" figure translate to a girl; those of you who get indecent implications one moment and find it going against the nature of the show, relax!This is anime after all! For all I knew, Brigadoon was going places with setting up multiple facets for audience appreciation. The mecha designs are basic but with fierce tenacity broadly reflected with their personalities. "People" bots = COOL!Regular bots = COOL! Leading me to a theory: Returning to old school isn't a bad idea at times...But, because I care, I'll provide a little trivia for anime staff buffs:Brigadoon's character designer = Code Geass' character designer = attractive designs for underage girls can work = ...a problem now?Finding fault in the art is one thing, but the music is another matter entirely.Who would've thought that Spice and Wolf's musicmen could make this!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbKwlxT4c8UMy response? Two things:1. WTF???2. What does this mean?I have a rule; if an OP's feeling is not properly reflected in the show's content then it affects everything.But this...http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rp2UA6cA8B4&feature=related ...gives the anime complete ability to identify itself. Come see Brigadoon if you want to watch something that has substance deserving music such as this... and vice versa.If there's anything I've tried my best to clarify about Briga is that there is not middle ground; there is nothing where you can draw conclusions or basis of reasoning from... which makes its characters feel so masterful. Marin is typically sunny, but her nature not befitting her standing in life draws trouble naturally. Bullied, condescended, and prejudiced. Even her best friend inadvertently hurts her for presumptuous accusations. To be cast as the source of all the strife exponentially raises all of that animosity. Melan's initial anal retentiveness towards her "mission" with Marin steadily dies down in favor of understanding.Despite the two's personal agendas, ages, and backgrounds, they are at the middle of this, and a bond so unlikely seen and born in anime forms here in this show.Respective person's lives interfere relentlessly and painfully from time to time, from the police bullying a girl and her family, to Melan's comrades' unpolished emotions obscuring priorities, to revenge stemming from Joe's and Jane's, to everyday circumstances leading the next step.I mentioned catharsis with characters, so even you readers forget I mention this, don't count anyone out.Because everyone involved is key to enjoying this show. Anime is already a warpy medium but Briga's uniqueness is pushing just how warpy something can be and still matter to watch.You'll have the mysteriousness to pique you along and the simple and clean characters growing and growing alongside you.Compared to that, what more do you need to venture into a foreign land?Ultimately though, I could call Briga great for the reasons why the most popular anime aren't: It does something new. It doesn't settle to just "try", it dives into itself, pulls out a magic paintbrush called imagination and flings it around til you can't recognize your way out. Alice in Wonderland? Yes.And like that story, you can watch it pan out and not get angry. Confused, definitely, but definitely more satisfied than you'd think.Letter Grading Time (LGT)Story: A- (pushes and pulls its fragile universe apart leaving the sincere, honest things we tend to ignore in anime the most...)Art: B+ (slap a lil' ol' school with a little retro with a fine dash of imagination and you get a miracle soup as manic as Duck Soup)Sound: A ("music is the voice of the soul..." The Cricket from James and the Giant Peach. Who woulda thought such a voice came from here...)Animation: B (Sunrise smooths things typically, but reality can bend only so far without the eye noticing)Character: A (you want characters you'll care about? ask no further)Enjoyment: B (trippy, but not slippery. Weird, but not off-putting. Engaging, but not detached)Overall: B+ ("Would you have it any other way?" is a question associated with greatness well deserved for here; one of the best genre overhauls in the medium)

Brigadoon employs advanced methodologies of delivering a more in-depth amount of characterization, preventing the narrative from appearing superficial as the unique characters take center stage. Achieved through the utilization of dark themes and consistency that are present throughout the entirety of the anime. Brigadoon utilizes several arcs within the overarching story to instill dark themes and superior character development by breaking away from stereotypical character archetypes. The use of dark themes in the show is a major contributor to the humanization of the characters, as each arc aims to further build upon the mentality of each character regardless of their importance. While also utilizing foreshadowing in an attempt to link each confrontation in a believable way, so that everything is consistent to the overarching objective. From episode one the level of development put into each character is evident, with every cast member (even background characters) being unique before receiving further development throughout the series. The main heroine ‘Marin Asagi’ is the best example of this, her circumstances force her to face her mistakes which lead to a noticeable and realistic shift in her mentality; as she begins to exhibit traits of depression, isolation and desperation. These very relatable human emotions in conjunction with the vibrant design of the heroine, make her one of the most lovable but realistic characters I've ever seen. Brigadoon’s high production value stems from the how the story directly influences characterization, as it takes advantage of every arc in an attempt to break away from stereotypical character archetypes. Every arc within the show contributes in some way to the overarching story, by developing characters and plot points in a consistent fashion. Through the lack of filler Brigadoon further emphasizes its great character development through action rather than words, while trying to better its narrative as the show progresses. Where the show suffers however is the flow and transitioning between confrontations. The transition between positive and negative aspects is rushed at points, with sudden changes in mood accruing at the strangest of time. Characters will even go from being depressed to happy nearly instantaneously to suit the plot at times. While this is typical to many anime, Brigadoon does it slightly better as characters exhibit subtle traits of mental strain as time goes on, making sudden transition in behavior more believable. This however only further emphasizes how the characters are the shows strongest attribute, as they help make up for sudden jumps in narrative by drawing attention away from any inconsistencies.  Overall, Brigadoon utilizes its superior character development methodologies and consistency in behavior to mask mistakes in narrative. While superficially it would appear to be done well, the crude nature of transitions between mood and theme is very noticeable when looked upon by a scrutinizing gaze.  Conclusively, Brigadoon in an excellent watch that offers a little bit of everything while boasting very human and relatable characters, by appealing to the fundamentals of human mentality. While some transitions in events and mood has been done in a crude fashion, the characters and the charming art style take the rectify this. I highly recommend this anime to anyone looking for a great series with lovable characters and magnitude of different elements that will attract fans of most genres.    ***<u>Final Score   -   8.5 / 10   -   (A MUST WATCH)</u>***  ***\[PLEASE FEEL FREE TO MESSAGE ME IF YOU FEEL THIS REVIEW’S QUALITY IS UNDERWHELMING, I’M ALWAYS LOOKING FOR CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM TO BETTER MY WRITING\]***

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